I didn't sit idly all day, twiddling my fingers, wishing work came to me.
I didn't loathe at myself wishing that I could "draw feet" when working on a piece at the spot where I have to draw feet on the picture.
I didn't go to further schooling to let someone hand me a piece of paper on their own terms and timeframe telling me if I'm "capable of art" or not.
I took things into my own hands.
A couple of common phrases to make to artists who are (of the person who believes that they're) "inexplicably too good" that annoy me are:
- "Ugh, I really wish I had your talent. Why are you so good!?"
- "You're so lucky. I wish I could do what you do".
- "I could never pull this off the way you pull it off."
Now, I understand that there are certain levels of aptitudes and paces that different people learn by, so don't get the idea of this entry wrong. But, really, let me make an illustration here:
I used to play basketball religiously growing up. Now I don't anymore. Every once in a while, my homies hit me up to see if I want to play a few games. And you know what? I SUCK AT IT
. Not scared as a reasonably tall, young black man to admit that. Now every time I look at players in the NBA like Kobe Bryant, I'm like "This bastard
, he's just too good". But I know why he's good. His training regimen is ridiculous. He's most likely always in the gym, shooting balls in holes, stepping up his game. Matter of fact, that's a fact. A quote from this article
"Hey, let's talk about that time Kobe Bryant decided to work out at 4 a.m. and spend the next 7 hours in the gym before practice with USA Basketball."
Now I can't get all upset at myself and pity myself wondering why he's so good, or, why can't I be at the gym at 4:00 AM and practice before
practice, nor do I ask myself how; the answer is simple as it is. He constantly works towards it.
You think hard work won't pay off? You're totally wrong
, and that's a fact, not my opinion. The question that is commonly asked "Is it even worth it?" Equivalent exchange, homie. You will always harvest something from what you've planted. If you work hard in anything, SOMETHING
will pay off. May not be exactly what you expect to be paid off, but there's ALWAYS something. I've had a few guys approach me, I give them the pep talk, and they're on fiyah
. Ready and rearing to go. They churn out about 5-10 pieces consecutively, and then wait.WHAT THE #@&% are you waiting for!?
That's easily one of my biggest pet peeves. The mindset they have is basically, "let's do these pictures and then see if I get any pageviews or new hits for leads on jobs or street cred". No no no no no. This is something I had to teach myself: You don't draw to gain, you draw to lose.
? That doesn't even make sense!!"Think about it.
What are you really gaining when you finish a piece of art? I mean, there are gains, but that happens with any piece of art and artist. There are always gains. But that's not (or shouldn't be, rather) your sole purpose. You draw to lose. You draw to lose those inaccuracies with that rib cage. You draw to lose the staleness and rigidness and loosen up. You draw to lose yourself in a world where you control every facet of it. You draw to lose the negative emotions you may be in a roller-coaster ride of to acquire tranquility.
The gains come regardless. You can draw a crappy picture of Sonic the Hedgehog, you'll gain a look or two, or even a few likes and comments on it. You can draw a horrible-looking, stick-framed female with huge boobs and a butt, and you'll even gain something as well (even unwanted gain).
I don't post art and then worry about how many people are going to go crazy over it, I could honestly care less. I'm here to go crazy (negative and positively) over it, and that's the only person I need to do so.Stop worrying about gaining so much.
Focus on losing. In this industry and society, everything is a competition, and no one wants to be the loser. NO ONE. It's not understood that the ideal way to be in life is to be a loser. It's the more self-effacing route to take, especially in art.
I've read some articles from like, artists and industry vets who made it, and the thing I always hear is: "Look, I'm living testimony that hard work pays off" all while telling people who wish to be in their place "put the video games in their place, focus on your art, work toward your goals, keep learning". It even took me a while to see it, and though I wouldn't consider myself as someone "who've made it", I'm starting to see the formula.
That's my little thoughtful rant for this evening.
TL;DR Ver.: Stop being a pansy and just draw.